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About NUI Galway
About NUI Galway
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At NUI Galway, we believe that the best learning takes place when you apply what you learn in a real world context. That's why many of our courses include work placements or community projects.
Community Development (MA)
MA (Community Development)
College of Arts, Social Sciences, & Celtic Studies
The aim of this programme is to impart specialist knowledge of the practical, organisational, managerial, and developmental skills that you need in order to practice effective community work; and to increase your analytical and evaluative understandings of the various contexts within which community development practice takes place. The overall objective is to educate and train you to become an effective development worker, who, with a professional approach, can make a direct and valuable contribution to affecting change at community level.
The Programme offers considerable one-to-one academic contact and support between students and staff, while the breadth and depth of the curriculum provides a unique educational experience. You also have an opportunity to acquire work experience of a minimum four months with a community based development agency in areas of work that match your interests and career plans.
A distinctive aspect of the MA in Community Development is that we offer joint teaching and learning opportunities with the three other postgraduate Programmes within the School (e.g. MA in Family Support, MA in Social Work and MA in Gender, Globalisation and Human Rights), which enables students to acquire a broad perspective on other approaches and knowledge relevant to community development work. The Programme is strongly connected to the UNESCO Child and Family Research Centre (see http://www.childandfamilyresearch.ie/) which is a leading, internationally distinguished, research and policy institute, while staff members are involved in a range of research clusters within the School. Other Staff throughout the School play a key role in teaching and supervising research dissertations by students.
At least a Second Class Honours Grade 2 degree in a social science or related discipline or equivalent. Development work experience is not a requirement for entry into the Programme, although accumulated work experience will be taken into account.
Garda Vetting/Police Clearance is required for this programme.
2 years, full-time
Next start date: This programme is currently under review.
ECTS weighting: 120
Average intake: 14
Applications and selections
Who teaches this course?
- Chris Curtin, MA (Galway), PhD (Hull)
- Anne Byrne, MA (Galway), PhD (Limerick)
- Michelle Millar, MA (Limerick), PhD (Limerick)
- Liam Coen, MA (Limerick)
- Ciara Bradley MA (Galway)
- Brian McGrath, MA (Galway), PhD (Aberdeen)
Requirements and assessment
A wide range of opportunities is open to graduates, both nationally and internationally. The MA programme will be of particular interest to persons who have an interest in employment provided by community/voluntary, public, and private sector development initiatives, local development (partnership) companies, community based social support work, overseas development work, group/facilitation work, youth work and development, policy research, evaluation and analysis.
Graduates have found employment in: community development projects; partnership companies; family support projects; policy and research (e.g., Combat Poverty Agency); regeneration programmes; rural development programmes.
Who’s suited to this course
In Semester Three of Year Two, students must complete a placement for a minimum four-month period in a practical community work environment, during which time participants’ knowledge and skills of community work practice is reinforced and their ability to apply practical work practices in innovative development processes is enhanced. Participants are encouraged to select work placement settings relevant to their own particular area of interest but are advised and facilitated in establishing and developing an identified project work task for the placement period.
Download taught and research
Community Development Officer, HSE
"Since graduating from the MA Community Development in NUI Galway, I have spent the past six years putting into action the skills I learned on the course. Working in the area of community health and social care for the HSE, I connect with a variety of communities ( youth, elderly, immigrant ) on a daily basis in order to assess their diverse and complex set of needs and put in place innovative initiatives in order to meet those needs. It is a challenging yet extremely rewarding role in which the M.A Community Development course has been an essential foundation on which to build my career.”